Bethel voters consider raising city's alcohol sales tax

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BETHEL, Alaska (AP) Voters in Bethel, Alaska, are considering an alcohol sales tax increase that would raise the rate from 12 to 15 percent.

KYUK-AM reports the proposed ordinance is on the Tuesday ballot, and it also would earmark 20 percent of the alcohol sales tax revenue for the city's health, public safety and social services programs.

City council member Leif Albertson drafted the ordinance citing that the tax hike would remedy the increased burden placed on public safety services after the city allowed liquor licenses. Albertson, who is running for re-election, says ambulance runs and police calls have increased since the city allowed the sale of alcohol.

Other city officials have voiced opposition to the ordinance citing concerns that the tax hike could create an incentive for illegal alcohol sales.

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